Don’t let the bad weather affect your business
By Adam Flight As the nights draw in, the temperature starts to drop and the weather begins to worsen, are you prepared for what the winter weather will throw at your business? Small businesses tend to be more affected by bad weather with even one absence potentially grinding the business to a halt or having a severe impact. So, how do you prepare for these eventualities? When reviewing or implementing a ‘bad weather’ or ‘journey to work’ policy, ensure that you get the balance right between being fair to employees, protecting their health and safety and keeping your business going. It is the employees’ responsibility to get to work and if an employee cannot come in because of bad weather, legally you do not have to pay them. However, employers are often flexible enough to allow the employee to take the day as part of their holiday entitlement or if possible allow them to work from home. Things you should consider when preparing for bad weather are listed below: • Review or implement a ‘bad weather’ policy and communicate it clearly to reduce any potential confusion. • Consider how you will treat absences or lateness due to bad weather or transport disruptions. • Consider allowing employees to take reasonable time off to make arrangements for childcare if schools or nurseries are closed (either paid or unpaid). • Consider making provisions for home working or working from a different location if possible. • Make sure your office/site Health and Safety is up to scratch. • Provide drivers of company vehicles with additional guidance during periods of bad weather. • Treat all employees consistently to avoid the risk of discrimination claims. So make sure your business is ready for bad weather and make sure your employees know what is expected. It’s snow joke when it comes to bad weather and HR Insight is always on hand to help weatherproof your business making sure that the weather doesn’t blow you off course.